Dele Alli has revealed he went to see Mauricio Pochettino after he was sacked by Tottenham, conceding he blamed himself for the Argentine's dismissal.

Spurs relieved Pochettino of his position last Tuesday, after a dismal start to the season saw Tottenham sit 14th with 14 points from 12 Premier League games.

Jose Mourinho was appointed as Pochettino's successor less than 12 hours later, with the former Manchester United and Chelsea manager overseeing a 3-2 win over West Ham in his first match in charge.

England midfielder Alli impressed in Saturday's triumph, but confirmed he had been upset by the news of Pochettino's sacking.

"I think it's so clear what Mauricio meant to the players. He was here for five years. He helped me grow a lot," Alli told a news conference ahead of Tottenham's Champions League meeting with Olympiacos - their first home game under Mourinho.

"I came here as an 18-year-old and had my ups and downs here and he's helped me through all of them. As soon as I found out the news I was very upset, but I wanted to speak to him.

"It was just a conversation between two friends. I've seen him more than I've seen my own family in the past five years so it's been very tough for me. But things change all the time.

"We have a job to do, we've got to keep moving forward, but he's going to be someone I stay in contact with. It'll be different because he's not my manager but he's an amazing person who's helped me not just in football but my life as well.

"We spoke a lot about football when he was here, but I was very upset. I couldn't wait to speak to him and to see him. I think it was just important. Our conversation wasn't too much about football."

Alli acknowledged it was difficult not to feel guilty over Pochettino losing his job.

"I would be lying if I say I didn't blame myself when it first happened rather than looking at the bigger picture," Alli said.

"We've had some amazing journeys together, we grew together, all of the coaching staff and the players. We achieved a lot in terms of where we've come from and we're all very thankful.

"You can't help but feel a bit to blame because we were out there, but sometimes it just doesn't work out. Now as players, we have a new manager here and we owe the club a lot as well - we have to make sure we get back in good form and win games."

Harry Kane revealed he spent "a couple of hours" with Mauricio Pochettino in the wake of the Argentinian's sacking as Tottenham manager.

Pochettino was sacked on Tuesday and replaced by Jose Mourinho, who guided Spurs to a 3-2 win at West Ham in his first game in charge.

Kane, who scored at the London Stadium, visited Pochettino the day after the 47-year-old was sacked.

"I've been to see him," the star forward told UK newspapers.

"I went around his house and caught up with him the next day. It was a shock for everyone, so I wanted to go and see him and we had a chat for a couple of hours, and it was nice to do that before the new manager came in.

"It's been a week I've never really had in my career before. A big shock on Tuesday night for everyone, the players included. And then it was a quick turnaround all of a sudden we got a new manager, one of the best managers there has been in the game."

While Pochettino impressed at the helm of Tottenham, including reaching last season's Champions League final, he failed to deliver a trophy.

Mourinho is a serial winner and Kane hopes the Portuguese tactician can lead Spurs to the trophies he craves.

"The gaffer has won every club he has gone to, there's no hiding away from that," he said.

"He wants to win, he's a proven winner. I've made it clear that I'm at the stage of my career where I want to win trophies, I've made it clear I want to win them here and it's a big year for this.

"Realistically, we look at the Champions League and the FA Cup to try to do that. We will see how that goes and, from my point of view, I will keep doing what I'm doing and keep fighting for this club on the pitch."

Spurs host Olympiacos in the Champions League on Tuesday as they look to book their place in the knockout stage.

How do you sum up a match like that? "It's football," was Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's attempt on Sky Sports. Notably, he added: "The difference between this year and last year's team is huge."

To put it simply, this was another Premier League away game in 2019-20 Manchester United did not win. To Wolves, Southampton, West Ham, Newcastle United and Bournemouth, now add the name of Sheffield United.

Five wins from six games in all competitions before Sunday was enough to suggest Solskjaer had his players turning a corner again. Then, in the week Mauricio Pochettino became available, they produced their worst 70 minutes in months, managed a breathtaking comeback, and still ended the game disappointed at a 3-3 draw. Such is life under Solskjaer: signs of progress and moments of excellence that only seem to make sure the next setback is still newsworthy.

They managed one shot – a league-low under Solskjaer – in perhaps the worst first half of football of his tenure. Solskjaer cackled before kick-off that Phil Jones, in his first league start of the season, might play in midfield and might play in defence.

That must have been the instruction he gave to the player personally, given the uncertain recklessness with which Jones bludgeoned his way in and out of position. His despairing grimace after he was shoved over by Lys Mousset for the fortunate but fully deserved opening John Fleck goal said it all, occurring as it did just two hours after Chris Smalling, deemed expendable by Solskjaer, was scoring and assisting in a 3-0 win for Roma.

The 3-4-3, the line-up, the instructions – everything seemed wrong. Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and Daniel James were so lifeless, so withdrawn from the action, they might as well have been having a kickabout at Hillsborough 12 miles away. Andreas Pereira found Sheffield United shirts with precision almost every time he had the ball. Brandon Williams, after a promising few weeks in the first team, was bullied and beaten with increasing ease down the left.

Sheffield United were everything the Red Devils were not: well-drilled, hard-working, swift and accurate with the ball, ferocious without it. They pulled the visitors out of position and surged into the gaps, while their opponents played at such an excruciatingly slow pace that 46-year-old Solskjaer could probably have joined in. After United took their first corner of the match short and played a handful of slow passes before Fred ballooned a cross out of play, Harry Maguire bellowed at his midfielder to "just put it in the f****** box!". The United Way.

The headlines were written, the #OleOut cries getting louder, the Pochettino dial turned up to 11. And then, in seven minutes, the youngsters into whose hands Solskjaer has put his job showed they will not let this manager go quietly into the night.

Williams struck a sweet half-volley, becoming the youngest United player in three years to score in the Premier League until Mason Greenwood took that stat for himself five minutes later. When Martial, James and Rashford finally combined, they tore the defence to shreds to make it 3-2.

It was breathless, barely believable. Pochettino was just the ex-Tottenham manager again as another stunning comeback with Solskjaer's name on it beckoned. But he must share the blame for their failure to see it out. With the hosts looking forlorn and suspect with every attack, Solskjaer blinked, taking off Martial for Axel Tuanzebe in the hope of holding on to what they had. They promptly dropped deep, failed to clear their box and let Ollie McBurnie equalise. The setback was the news again.

And so Ole remains at the wheel, grinding through the gears, veering into traffic, but his gaze steadfast on the road ahead. United are ninth, closer in points to the relegation zone than the top four, 20 adrift of leaders Liverpool… but fighting. Would they fight for Pochettino in the same way?

Robert Pires concedes Arsenal are "in big trouble" but is backing Unai Emery as the right coach to change their fortunes.

A late goal from Alexandre Lacazette – his second of the game – salvaged a 2-2 home draw against Southampton on Saturday, with Arsenal now without a win in their last five Premier League matches.

The Gunners sit a worrying eight points behind fourth-placed Chelsea after just 13 games.

Saturday's result piled more pressure on Emery, with Arsenal's fanbase growing increasingly restless.

But Pires, who won two Premier League titles and two FA Cups during his time at Arsenal under Arsene Wenger, believes Emery can correct their dismal form.

"Everybody knows at Arsenal, even Unai Emery, that they are in big trouble," Pires told Omnisport, speaking as part of the UEFA Champions League Trophy Tour driven by Nissan.

"But [Emery] is a competitor, he knows the high level. He was a great manager with Sevilla, with Paris Saint-Germain, but the situation is not so good.

"He is a good manager, I think he will make a success with Arsenal. I hope for him anyway. The situation isn't so good, but him and the players need to find the solution."

Pires said Arsenal must still push for a top-four place, given the Champions League is where the best players want to be.

He said: "The target for Arsenal and for Unai is to finish in the top four because it's very important for Arsenal to play again in the Champions League next season.

"I don't know what will happen at the end of the season, especially for Arsenal. For some players - [Pierre-Emerick] Aubameyang, Lacazette, or even Mesut Ozil - the first thing for them and all the Arsenal players is to finish in the top four."

Arsenal's north London rivals Tottenham underwent managerial upheaval in midweek, with Mauricio Pochettino replaced by Jose Mourinho following a dismal start to the campaign.

Mourinho started his tenure with a 3-2 win at West Ham, and despite Arsenal's rivalry with Spurs, Pires is glad to see the former Manchester United and Chelsea boss back in the Premier League.

"I think it's great news for football generally, and of course for the Premier League. Everyone knows that Mourinho is one of the best managers in the world," Pires said.

"He won lots of titles: Spain, Italy, and of course in the UK. In the UK, we know there is competition between Spurs and Gunners, but this is football and I'm very sad for Mauricio Pochettino.

"He is a great manager, only six months ago he got to the final of the Champions League. Unfortunately for him he lost against Liverpool and now he is sacked.

"So footballers or even the manager, things are tough."

Barcelona are preparing for next season and they have several players on their wish list.

The LaLiga leaders are enjoying a decent campaign in 2019-20, but they already have one eye on 2020-2021.

Inter's Lautaro Martinez, Bayern Munich's Joshua Kimmich and Fiorentina's Nikola Milenkovic are reportedly their main targets.

 

TOP STORY – BARCELONA TARGET MARTINEZ, KIMMICH AND MILENKOVIC

Martinez, Kimmich and Milenkovic are Barcelona's main targets ahead of 2020-21, according to AS.

If they miss out on Kimmich, they will look to RB Leipzig's Lukas Klostermann, the report says.

Meanwhile, Chelsea defender Andreas Christensen is another option, while Arsenal's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is a target if they cannot land Martinez.

ROUND-UP

- Mauricio Pochettino could be set for a quick return to management. Bayern Munich want to hold talks with the former Tottenham manager, according to The Telegraph.

- Could the impact of Jose Mourinho be felt at Tottenham already? Toby Alderweireld, who is out of contract at the end of the season, could stay at Spurs after Mourinho's arrival, The Telegraph also reports.

- Roma could extend Lorenzo Pellegrini's contract, but several clubs are interested in the midfielder. Manchester United, Tottenham, Juventus, AC Milan and Inter have shown some interest in Pellegrini, according to CalcioMercato.

- Marko Pjaca has failed to have an impact since his arrival at Juventus in 2016. CalcioMercato reports the Croatian attacker, who has already been on loan at Schalke and Fiorentina since his arrival in Turin, could be set for another spell away from Juve in January.

- Chelsea have a target in January if their transfer ban is overturned. The Premier League giants have been monitoring CSKA Moscow striker Fedor Chalov, according to Sky Sports. The 21-year-old scored 15 Russian Premier League goals last season and has five in 16 games in 2019-20.

Pep Guardiola welcomed Jose Mourinho back to the Premier League by predicting the "incredible manager" will do a good job at Tottenham.

Mourinho and Guardiola clashed unforgettably while in charge of Real Madrid and Barcelona respectively at the start of the decade.

Their renewed rivalry failed to catch fire in Manchester, however, as Guardiola stormed to back-to-back Premier League titles at City while Mourinho endured an increasingly torrid United tenure that culminated in his sacking 11 months ago.

Mauricio Pochettino's shock Spurs exit this week gave ex-Porto, Chelsea and Inter boss Mourinho an unexpected route back to the Premier League and it is one Guardiola expects him to grasp with both hands.

"I think you know him better than me," Guardiola told a news conference ahead of City's game against Chelsea at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday.

"He was many years here in different clubs. Welcome back. He's an incredible manager. I'm pretty sure he will do a good job."

Throughout his trophy-laden City tenure, Guardiola has certainly come far closer to meeting his match in Pochettino.

Spurs dealt the former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss his first defeat in English football and Pochettino's men also dramatically knocked City out of the Champions League at the quarter-final stage last season.

A failure to win silverware at Tottenham has been voiced as a criticism of Pochettino in some quarters, but Guardiola feels it is important to look at the Argentinian's full body of work.

"Mauricio has done an incredible job. All the managers are judged for the titles you win, but it's not the truth," he said.

"At the end, it is the job you have done and in the time he was there I think the club was better.

"Always the manager, when they leave, it is to know if the club or the team are better than the moment you took over these players or this club.

"I think it happened. But decisions are made and there's nothing else to say."

A fresher face in Premier League dugouts is in opposition to Guardiola this weekend and the City manager is an admirer of Frank Lampard, whose third-placed Chelsea team head into the weekend a point and a position above champions City.

"From the beginning [of the season] his team played really good. He was consistent in his ideas and the results are there," Guardiola said.

"I am happy for him. I know him a little bit and have some info because was here. He's an excellent person.

"I think it is good for English football. It's so nice that young English managers are taking over the important clubs and doing well.

"Playing the way they play is perfect for English football. It is the best way to get better for the national team and the club itself."

Frank Lampard was happy to see Jose Mourinho join Tottenham, but the Chelsea head coach ruled out any chance of ever making the same move.

After a poor start to the season, Spurs sacked Mauricio Pochettino on Tuesday, announcing Mourinho's arrival less than 12 hours later.

Lampard played under Mourinho in the manager's two spells at Chelsea, winning back-to-back Premier League titles during the Portuguese's first stint at Stamford Bridge.

During his time at Chelsea, Mourinho stated he would never join Spurs, but Lampard holds nothing against his former manager for signing up with another London club, even if the Spurs move is not one he can envisage making himself.

"I can firmly say no," Lampard told a news conference when asked if he would ever join Tottenham. "You can replay that in 10 years. I was here for 13 years as a player, have a deep feeling for the club.

"That's no disrespect to Tottenham, I have a lot of friends who are Tottenham fans and Arsenal fans, but sometimes there are feelings which mean you just wouldn't do it. Not disrespectful to the club, but because of what Chelsea has given me as a player and now, it's something that is certainly not on my list.

"That's only [Mourinho's] decision and you only make that decision as you go. Jose has managed a lot of football clubs over a long career.

"That's his decision, whether fans judge him or not for it is something that's out of his hands. As a professional, you have to understand a right to work but we do have this tribal instinct in this country where fans react to it."

Mourinho had been out of a managerial job since he was sacked by Manchester United in December 2018.

Lampard, whose side face Manchester City on Saturday, insists Spurs are sure to be in contention for a Champions League place given their quality.

"History and results speak for themselves. The trophies and titles he's managed to win at the clubs he has worked at. Things like that are not shocks or surprises, they're because of hard work and what you put in, he's done that consistently at the teams that he's been at, that's what we measure him by," Lampard said.

"Wherever you go is a new beginning, so I don't think you can rely on that and I don't think he will be. People will hold up his record and expect big things from him.

"Spurs have had a difficult start but when you look at the team Pochettino has built and what Mourinho takes on is a group of very good players even though they're in a slightly false position at the moment for whatever reason.

"They're in the top-four race. That was the story at the start of the season and it'll be the story at the end of the season because of their quality.

"When you look at their team, pound-for-pound, over the last three or four years, it's why they reached the Champions League final. You look at their strength in depth, the individual talent, especially in forward areas, they're going to be a threat."

Jurgen Klopp is delighted with Jose Mourinho's return to the Premier League, but is sure former Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino will be in line for a top job.

Pochettino - who guided Spurs to four successive top-four finishes in the league and last season's Champions League final - which Tottenham lost to Klopp's Liverpool - was relieved of his position on Tuesday following a poor start to the campaign.

Spurs moved quickly to appoint ex-Chelsea and Manchester United manager Mourinho as Pochettino's replacement on Wednesday.

Liverpool's 3-1 defeat of United in December 2018 spelled the end of Mourinho's tenure at Old Trafford, and Klopp is thrilled to have his old rival back in the Premier League, though he has no doubt Pochettino will land another big job soon enough.

"Welcome back Jose. It's nice to have him back," Klopp, whose Liverpool side sit 20 points and 13 places above Tottenham, told a media conference.

"He was desperate, you could see in the time he wasn't in [management] but on the other side Mauricio is not anymore and it shows how quick things change nowadays.

"Around five months ago we played each other in the Champions League final and now he's on holiday, I hope he can enjoy it.

"He did a brilliant job at Spurs, nobody doubts, everybody knows that, a great guy, left and right of the game, I really enjoyed the challenge of playing against him, he was [the opposition manager] in my first game in the Premier League so we have a history together.

"Everybody knows all of the jobs, available or not available, Mauricio will be in contention, everything will be fine. It was a big one, when I heard it first I couldn't really believe it but then a couple of hours later they already had the solution.

"I hope he can enjoy the few days, weeks, months off, I do not know, it will not last long and then he will be back. Jose is highly motivated so that will be interesting as well."

While Mourinho's Tottenham stint starts with Saturday's early kick-off against West Ham, unbeaten Liverpool - who defeated title rivals Manchester City prior to the international break - face Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park.

Jose Mourinho knows Tottenham is probably his last major club job in English football and would love to emulate the length of Mauricio Pochettino's stay in north London.

Spurs sacked Pochettino after five-and-a-half years at the helm on Tuesday, moving swiftly to secure former Chelsea, Real Madrid and Manchester United boss Mourinho as his replacement.

The 56-year-old has penned terms until the end of the 2022-23 season and spoke glowingly of the squad, facilities and wider project he has inherited in north London when facing the media for the first time in his new role.

As such, he has designs on staying in charge even longer and matching Pochettino's longevity.

"I would love to stay many years," he said. "When I say many years, I know realistically how football is.

"If I could do a Mauricio, five-and-a-half years, it would be amazing."

A three-time Premier League winner across two spells at Chelsea, Mourinho suggested he has 10 years left in the game when pondering his long-term future.

That means, if all goes to plan at Spurs, this job will conclude his time in a division with which he will be forever associated.

Other potential stops sketched out for his final years could be boyhood club Vitoria Setubal back in Portugal and his national team,

"So, I'm 56, 61 [after five years at Tottenham]," he added.

"Ten more years – Vitoria Setubal, Portugal. It's maybe the last [job in England], yeah."

The immediate item on the agenda for Mourinho is a trip to face old foe Manuel Pellegrini and a West Ham side enduring a similarly underwhelming campaign to Spurs.

Tottenham are winless in the Premier League since the end of September, with a return of three draws from their past five matches.

They lie 14th – two places and a point better off than West Ham, who last won six games ago at home to Mourinho's old employers from Old Trafford.

Hansi Flick says it is not his position to analyse the merits of other coaches amid rumours Mauricio Pochettino could become Bayern Munich's permanent new boss.

Bayern, who sacked Niko Kovac earlier this month, have placed Flick in charge at the Allianz Arena until at least the Bundesliga's mid-season break.

Pochettino has been linked to the post after being sacked by Tottenham this week, although reports suggest Real Madrid view the Argentine as a successor to Zinedine Zidane at the end of the season.

For Flick, the only focus is on the immediate job in hand, which is Bayern's trip to Fortuna Dusseldorf on Saturday.

"It is not my job to analyse coaching colleagues," he told a pre-match news conference. 

"The club now has all the options to look for the future, whatever they want. I'm doing my job now and trying to be successful with the team.

"Football is a day-to-day business, it can be different tomorrow than yesterday. We'll wait until the winter break, then we'll sit down together."

On being placed in charged for the interim, Flick added: "We prepare just as before. 

"I am completely satisfied with the solution. It is crucial that the club has time to think about what is right for the future."

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is not concerned by Mauricio Pochettino's new-found employment status - and conceded any manager would want his Manchester United job.

Pochettino has been a rumoured target for United for some time and is now available after being sacked by Tottenham on Tuesday.

With the Red Devils sitting seventh in the Premier League table, nine points adrift of a Champions League spot, Solskjaer could be forgiven for looking nervously over his shoulder, but the Norwegian cut a relaxed figure at his media conference on Friday.

Speaking ahead of Sunday's trip to Sheffield United, he said: "It's always sad when one of your colleagues - a good man - loses his job just before Christmas. It's never nice to see. I just wish him all the best.

"In football you can never be surprised or you can't be shocked at anything. For me, I've just got to focus on us.

"It doesn’t bother me at all. I've got the best job in the world. I'm sure that if you're in a job or if you're out of a job and you're a manager, you want this job."

Solskjaer says he has open communication with executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward and is confident he will be granted the time and resources to improve United's fortunes.

He added: "It doesn't really matter [that Pochettino is out of work]. I've got to focus on my job at Man United, do it as well as we can.

"I speak with Ed, I speak with the owners all the time about how we're going to move the club forward. That doesn’t change if some other clubs change their managers."

Pochettino was replaced by former United boss Jose Mourinho, and Solskjaer was pleased to have such an engaging, and controversial, figure back in English football.

"It's good to have Jose back, definitely - especially for you guys [the media]," he said.

"Maybe for me because you can talk and write about everything else."

Mourinho's arrival in north London prompted suggestions on social media that the Portuguese will immediately target United midfielder Nemanja Matic in January - a player he has worked with previously at Old Trafford and Chelsea.

Matic even liked one post and replied with laughing and clapping emojis, but Solskjaer, who has previously encouraged his players to be "boring" on Twitter and Instagram, appeared unconcerned.

He said: "No, that's not a part of being boring.

"You like Jose coming back. It's going to be a spectacle and a circus. Nemanja has got a sense of humour."

Mauricio Pochettino said "you will always be in our hearts" as the former Tottenham manager left an emotional goodbye message to the Spurs squad.

Pochettino was sacked and replaced by Jose Mourinho on Wednesday, despite leading Tottenham to a shock Champions League final last season.

Tottenham pulled the pin on Pochettino's five-and-a-half-year tenure with the club languishing 14th in the Premier League.

Pochettino's assistant Jesus Perez used Twitter to share the Argentinean's heartfelt goodbye on a tactics board, having been unable to say goodbye personally.

"Big thanks to you all," Pochettino wrote in a picture posted on Thursday.

"We can't say goodbye… you will always be in our hearts."

Pochettino's future has dominated headlines since his Tottenham departure.

The 47-year-old has been linked to Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich as well as Manchester United, who reportedly keen on Pochettino before turning to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain have also been touted as potential destinations for Pochettino.

Mauricio Pochettino will get the chance to take charge of one of the best teams in the world due to his efforts at Tottenham, Marcelo Bielsa says.

Spurs sacked Pochettino this week after just five wins in 17 matches in all competitions this season and replaced him with former Chelsea, Real Madrid and Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho.

The 47-year-old's departure came less than six months after he led Spurs to their first Champions League final, where they were beaten 2-0 by Liverpool.

Bielsa, who coached Pochettino as a young player at Newell's Old Boys and has been credited with influencing his post-playing career, says reaching that final showed just how well the Spurs side had been constructed even in a season in which no players were signed.

Bielsa now expects Pochettino to be given a chance by one of the world's top clubs.

"I'm going to talk, not about the relationship I have with Pochettino, but for what I have observed in English football," the Leeds United boss said on Thursday.

"The work Pochettino has done is brilliant. In the last year, he put Tottenham in a high level in the world. For any coach, it's a very important achievement. For Pochettino, I think it's even more important because the team that played in the Champions League last year was a team he built very carefully.

"The performance of this team was more linked by collective play rather than top players being bought for them. They didn't buy big players to achieve this. This reality makes Pochettino's work even more important.

"People who work professionally like that earn absolutely deserved credit. Maybe he couldn't enjoy this credit at Tottenham. But he will take this credit and big teams in the world will look to capitalise on it.

"For sure, he is a manager who will lead one of the best teams in the world. He made Tottenham one of the most important teams in the world.

"I have a lot of affection and respect for Mauricio. When something that is not good happens to him, I can't ignore it. If we look at the close effect of the situation, we can be sad. I feel sad.

"But in 15 days, he'll be at the top again, because when you see things from a distance, without looking at recent facts, then you can realise what you've really achieved.

"Now, he leaves a team that is attractive to Mourinho – that has a lot of value. The next team who take him will express again the respect Pochettino has created."

Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford insists there is no better manager for the club than Ole Gunnar Solskjaer despite suggestions they could be interested in Mauricio Pochettino.

Tottenham sacked Pochettino this week and replaced him with former United boss Jose Mourinho, with Spurs having won only four of their past 18 matches in all competitions.

There has been talk that United could consider turning to Pochettino to take over from Solskjaer, whose side have only managed two more points than Spurs from their opening 12 Premier League games of the season.

However, Rashford - who signed a new four-year contract in July – said Solskjaer's plans were part of the reason why he committed his future to the club.

"There was no hesitation from me over signing a new contract," he told Sky Sports News.

"And it was the same for Ole as well – I could see where his head was at, where he wanted the club to be at and for me it was just a no-brainer.

"We were on the same page and wanted the same things for the club. Ole is a great guy and he has the club's interests at heart so there's not a better person for the job in my opinion."

While he supports Solskjaer, Rashford admits he will not be happy if United end the season in the Premier League's top four but without winning a trophy.

The Red Devils have not won meaningful silverware since claiming the EFL Cup and Europa League in Mourinho's first term in charge in 2016-17.

With the Premier League title seemingly out of their reach already this season – leaders Liverpool are already 18 points ahead of United after 12 matches – Solskjaer's routes to success lie in the cup competitions.

There is pressure on United to return to the Champions League after failing to qualify last season, but Rashford does not think 2019-20 can be considered a success unless they also win at least one of the EFL Cup, FA Cup or Europa League.

"It's been a while," the England international added about United's barren run of titles. "If we come out of this season with top four but without a trophy, I wouldn't be happy.

"If we manage to get some trophies and get ourselves into the top four then, of course, it has been a successful season.

"For me, it is just about putting markers down for what we can do in the future because we know that this period is not going to change overnight, Ole's not going to get what he wants overnight.

"We have to bide our time and just be patient, as long as we keep working hard and believe in what we are doing – which I think the team do 100 per cent – then I think we will be fine."

Jose Mourinho believes Tottenham can target the Premier League title next season after he sought to strike a humble tone at his maiden news conference.

The former Chelsea, Real Madrid and Manchester United boss was installed as Spurs' head coach this week in the aftermath of Mauricio Pochettino's shock sacking.

Dismal domestic form that leaves Tottenham languishing in 14th going into Saturday's London derby at West Ham ultimately brought the end of Pochettino's five-and-a-half-year reign.

The yawning gap to leaders Liverpool stands at 20 points after 12 games, but Mourinho lavished praise on his new squad and claimed a first league title for Spurs since 1960-61 in 2020-21 is possible.

"We can't win the Premier League this season," he told reporters.

"Next season, I'm not saying we will win it, but we can win it."

Mourinho has spent 11 months out of football since his sacking at Manchester United and the appointment of new faces to his backroom staff – coaches Joao Sacramento and Nuno Santos joining from Lille – add to a sense of him turning over a new leaf.

"I am humble enough to try and analyse my career, not just the last year but my career- the evolution, the problems," he said.

"The principle of the analysis was not to blame anyone else. When I had meetings with my assistants and the people I wanted to bring with me in this chapter it was on the principle that there was no one else to blame.

"I'm not going to make the same mistakes. I'm going to make new mistakes. I'm going to be stronger.

"From an emotional point of view I'm relaxed, motivated and ready and I think the players felt that these two days. I'm ready and I'm here to support them.

"In life you go through periods like this, where it's not about myself, it's about my players and my club."

Nevertheless, Mourinho also insisted the playing style and principles that have yielded league titles in four countries will remain, as will his requirement for his players to always put the demands of the collective before themselves.

"[My style will be] very similar to before. On top of that I will try to add the details and sometimes the details can make the difference," he explained.

"The style of play has to be always adapted, not just to the club culture but to the playing squad. These are the players, they have their qualities.

"I read a quote from Kobe Bryant and, if you have to speak about some example of professionalism and a serial winner, Kobe is a great example in the world of sport. He said: 'People say that I am difficult but I am only difficult for the ones who do not share my principles.'

"All the colleagues who share his principles love him. The ones who don't like him are the ones who don't share the principles. With me it is basically the same.

"For me everything is about the team, it is not about selfish people. It is about the group, professionalism, commitment, respect for the club, respect for the team-mates.

"I cannot run away from this. If there is somebody that doesn't share these principles with me then they have a problem and we will always have a problem.

"This is the way I think football has to be. The players are only big when they make the others better. You cannot be a big player if you only think about yourself. That is another principle."

Page 4 of 9
© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.